Omer Ninham was just 14 when he was part of a gang that threw a 13-year-old Hmong boy to his death from the top of a Green Bay parking garage in 1998....Here's the opinion. There is a dissenting opinion by Shirley Abrahamson (joined by Ann Walsh Bradley):
The law that allowed Ninham to be tried and convicted as an adult, and sentenced to Wisconsin's harshest penalty, came as a result of outrage over the fate of an earlier 14-year-old killer. In 1983, Peter Zimmer killed his adoptive parents and brother in Mineral Point, but could only be found delinquent and held until he turned 19, when he was released with a new name and a plane ticket to Florida....
Ninham suffered physical and mental abuse at home, and was regularly drinking alcohol by age 10. He never had a toothbrush until he was put into juvenile detention. His lawyers say he has made great progress in prison.
Just as society's standards of decency categorically do not allow a juvenile to be sentenced to death, juveniles 14 years old or younger should not be sentenced to death in prison.
Omer Ninham's sentence guarantees he will die in prison without any meaningful opportunity to obtain release, no matter what he might do to demonstrate that the heinous act he committed as a 14-year-old is not representative of his true character. I conclude the death-in-prison sentence subjecting the 14-year-old to "hopeless, lifelong punishment and segregation is not a usual or acceptable response to childhood criminality, even when the criminality amounts to murder."